Things happen for a reason.
I've been missing my kids the past few days and I wish they are still home with me. Was it worth it having them all go away for college? I struggle with the thought of what could have been if we all stayed together? What if we didn't leave the Philippines? What if I had just asked them to go to school in the same city I'm in? What if I tried to hold on to them as long as I can?
These questions lingered in me. Until I visited each of my kids' Facebook account. I go through their recent photos, my eldest daughter had a busy week entertaining a visiting high school friend. They went around Berkeley and San Francisco and had a blast. My second daughter had a busy October at school but still manages to attend her pre- health organization's meetings and events at UCLA. My son in Cornell also has been busy with school work and had a lot of fun with his Filipino-American student organization's event of hosting a comedy workshop.
Finally, I read a conversation among the three of them, with my eldest daughter leading the way, on how they should catch up on Google Hangout. All three of them promise to update their planners so they can arrange a meeting, hoping to do this bi-monthly. This thread was so heart-warming for me. I guess my greatest fear is we are all so busy that we lose connection to each other. But that connection can no longer be broken.
No matter how busy our schedules get, how far away we are from each other, we are still the same. Our connections have been built through all the years we were together. We started early, raising the kids in an active and creative environment, making sure they played a sport and a musical instrument in elementary school. It continued by demanding from them the highest grades possible but at the same time asking them to do extracurricular activities. Getting them involved in research and internships in high school. And asking them to be the best person they could be when they leave for college. Things happen for a reason. My kids are all away from home to get the best education and experience for them to prepare for the future. And now I am just riding along until I get to be with them again.
Ukoy (Shrimp Fritter)
Ukoy is a popular street food in the Philippines. I've been wanting to make this especially at this time of the year when pumpkins are everywhere. Squash is one of the ingredients and I wanted the streaks of squash to show, but it turned out like it blended with the batter. My husband said it didn't look like the traditional one, but whatever it is he said, it surely tasted great... LOL!
1 lb shrimp, deveined
1 cup squash, shredded
1 medium carrot, shredded
2 stalks green onions sliced
(you could also add mongo sprouts or potatoes)
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 tsp lemon-pepper powder
3/4 water (pour it slowly, making sure that the batter is still thick)
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
salt to taste
You don't like a soggy shrimp fritter, so I'm sharing a technique which I learned from America's Test Kitchen on PBS. The solution is to dry the ingredients (veggies and shrimp) with a paper towel first and mix them with the dry ingredients. The dry ingredients absorbs the moisture of the veggies and shrimp.
Mix the dry ingredients first: flour, cornstarch, lemon-pepper powder. Toss the veggies and shrimp. This will allow the water to be absorbed by the dry ingredients.
On a separate bowl, whip egg and water together. Pour it over the dry ingredients and mix well.
Heat cooking oil in a pan. Scoop about 2 tablespoons of batter. Quickly drop them in the hot oil. Cook each sides for about 2 minutes or until golden brown.
Serve with vinegar with pepper and onions but you could also use the sweet chili if you'd prefer. Enjoy!
I remember eating this in the palengke. But yours look on a higher notch. Super sosyal.ReplyDelete
You are lucky to have bright and intelligent children. Your blessings are wonderful.
Thank you for coming over. This is a great surprise. I'm glad to see you here!
Very touching post. Thank you for sharing your secret to having high achieving children. Your ukoy looks divine. Nothing I've see before.ReplyDelete
I'm glad i'm able to share my story with you. It takes a lot to come over here but all worth it.
Thank you for the blog support.
I enjoyed this post so much. Giving up your comfort zone to come here maybe the greatest sacrifice but the fruits are sweet.ReplyDelete
thanks for dropping by. indeed it's worth the sacrifice... definitely no regrets.
Ahhhh I'm so afraid of those times will come to us eventually. As a person who left home so far away, I always feel my kids would do the same... who knows but I have to expect worse. :) Whatever it is I believe that if we raise them right, they will be around us. Sounds like your children are all amazing and I can see why. :) You are a wonderful mom Malou! And not to mention you are great cook. This shrimp fritters look delicious!ReplyDelete
for as long as you packed them with food and memories, yes they will always come home. i'm sure you will also do fine Nami. We just worry a lot hihihiDelete
What a touching story. I share in your sentiments, too, now that my own sons are adults and have left the nest. Thanks for this Ukoy recipe. You read my mind! I was thinking of making it seeing all the squash around. Now you just inspired me to go get some from the markets. Thanks for this lovely post, Malou!ReplyDelete
yes ukoy has been in my head... stucked for day already. glad to see you! happy weekend!Delete
It is important to keep those ties intact. Your ties are built strong because of the love you have. Thank you for sharing your story.This post inspires and validates what I went through too.ReplyDelete
Congratulations for making that sacrifice.
Thanks for the kinds words. We are lucky to have technology working on our side. Skyping is the best thing hihi!Delete
Awwww, I can only imagine it is really hard for you, but social media is amazing these days for sure! Your fritters sounds soooooo delicious! Hugs, TerraReplyDelete
Yes social media makes the world small. It's easy to get updates from across the coast or even across the globe. Thanks for dropping by my friend. Hugs back!Delete
Malou, you brought tears to my eyes reading your precious and hearfelt post. I too went through the same thing as you with both of my kids away at college...even worse! They both went 'overseas'...one to Cannes, France, and the other to Florence, Italy, (gratefully, on a scholarship)...did not see them for an entire year; and my son for an additional year, away 'overseas' in Israel! Now, that they each have families of their own, I love them all having them near me. It will all work out for you as well, and your children will decide to reside near you after college! You're a wonderful MOM:)DReplyDelete
I adore your awesome shrimp fritters, and I also follow the great tip of making sure to dry the veggies first with paper towel to keep them staying crunchy when frying. Thanks for sharing your amazing recipe, my dear friend!
Thank you for that inspiring comment. I told my kids that when they are done schooling, we will pick a city that we could all live together. I always tease them that we should be a street away from each other haha. But of course I know that will not happen.Delete
Thank you so much for coming over. You are a sweet friend.
Social media really has shrunk the world. Skype is wonderful for face-to-face telephone calls halfway around the world. And these fritters look terrific! I love shrimp, and these have such great flavor. Thanks.ReplyDelete
I am glad that we could put technology to good use in ourlives as we try to get updates from our busy lives.Delete
Thanks again. I always cheer up when I see you stop by.
Yummy! This looks like a great recipe!ReplyDelete
I think you have a similar recipe too right? Great seeing you!Delete
Lol - I tried moving away and then after college ended up right near my family again :) It sounds like you raised great kids, you're so lucky.ReplyDelete
Plus those ukoy looks great - I've never thought to use squash in ukoy, but it sounds super tasty.
I feel for you my dear, but we all have to let go of our kids at some point. It's OK to feel the way you do, but just try to DWELL on the upsdie of it all- they are on the path to spectacular careers and bright futures - in the end, you will can only be happy and nothing else after all these sacrifices. Cheer up and eat your ukoy!ReplyDelete
When I stopped working 3 years ago, I became the house cook of the family. Learned a lot by going on google. I made ukoy but they turned out soggy. Thank you for your posting. I will give it a try and hopefully it will come right. God bless your sharing heart.ReplyDelete